While the face may be the first area in which you notice subtle signs of aging, the delicate skin of the neck can also undergo substantial changes. You might see horizontal bands form around the neck or skin laxity the creates the dreaded “turkey wattle” underneath the chin. Instead of opting for turtlenecks year-round you can consider a surgical procedure to reverse those aging symptoms and restore your youthful appearance. A neck lift may be just the ticket for men and women who have become self-conscious of an aging neck.
A neck lift is a surgery that can precisely address your concerns and aesthetic goals with a customized approach that can be modified for each patient. Whether this surgery is performed alone or in combination with other rejuvenation procedures like a facelift, the treatment is designed to produce dramatic, long-lasting results. Member surgeons of the California Society of Facial Plastic Surgery typically offer a neck lift option to patients, because this is a common aging concern today.
Is a Neck Lift for You?
A neck lift is usually recommended to patients with significant signs of aging that are not likely to see satisfactory results from nonsurgical treatments. Surgery is the only method that effectively removes loose skin and creates a more youthful profile, as skin tightening procedures are typically not sufficient for this purpose. A neck lift is also good for patients that want to see long-lasting improvement in skin laxity, wrinkles and excess fatty deposits under the chin. Nonsurgical solutions are usually temporary and must be repeated to maintain results, while surgical benefits can extend for many years. When fatty deposits are a concern, the surgical lift is often combined with liposuction to create the smoothest contour.
Making the Decision for a Neck Lift
When you decide to undergo any surgical procedure, your choice of a plastic surgeon will be the determining factor in the quality of your experience and outcome. It is critical to choose a surgeon with the qualifications and experience to provide you with the best possible results. You also want a surgeon that will take the time at your initial consultation to truly understand your concerns and aesthetic goals, so your results meet your expectations. The surgeons who are a member of the California Society of Facial Plastic Surgery are carefully screened for board-certification and the credentials necessary to give patients peace-of-mind in knowing their surgical experience will be both safe and successful.
Understanding Neck Lift Surgery
Neck lift surgery is nearly always performed on an outpatient basis, which means you will be able to go home the same day. Your surgeon may choose to use local or general anesthesia, depending on the complexity of the procedure and the preference of both the surgeon and the patient. Rest assured you will be comfortable throughout the process and unaware of the details of the surgery as it progresses. Incisions will be small and strategically placed where visible post-operative scarring will be minimal. Placement is typically within the lower hairline, in the natural creases around the ear or underneath the chin.
Through the incisions, your surgeon will reposition underlying tissue while removing small areas of fat and excess skin. The platysma muscle can also be tightened to create a smoother exterior and eliminate horizontal banding. Liposuction can be added to suction away fat deposits as well. Once all corrections have been made, incisions will be meticulously closed to minimize visible evidence of the procedure. Neck lifts usually take between 60 and 90 minutes to complete, although surgical time may be extended if other procedures are done at the same time.
What to do After Your Neck Lift
You will likely go home with a neck support garment, used to reduce swelling and encourage healing to the area. It is common to have some swelling and bruising after your surgery, but these side effects don’t last for more than one to two weeks in most cases. Post-operative discomfort can be minimized with pain medications for the first few days. Your surgeon may also provide you with additional instructions on how to care for yourself after surgery to have a comfortable, low-risk recovery. You will also have follow-up visits with your surgeon to monitor your healing and address any concerns that might arise.
Patients are usually able to go back to work and other activities in their daily schedule within one week after a neck lift. By that time, you should not have much visible evidence that you had plastic surgery – residual bruising should be easily concealed under makeup. Your neck might feel tight for a few weeks, but that side effect will also resolve in time.
Within a few weeks, the full evidence of your surgery should become evident. You will see a tighter, smoother neck contour, without the horizontal crease or loose skin that added to your aged appearance. If the skin under the chin was a concern that was addressed, you will likely enjoy a more defined lower facial profile as well.
The effects of a neck lift can last for many years. However, it is impossible, and over time, you may start to see skin laxity and wrinkles reappear in this area. At that time, you can visit with your plastic surgeon once again to discuss additional procedures if appropriate.
Seeking plastic surgery is an essential step in your life and one that should not be taken lightly. Your choice of surgeon is essential to a safe experience and a positive result. California Society of Facial Plastic Surgery understands the importance of becoming well-informed in preparation for any surgery. In addition to comprehensive information offers about various procedures on our website, we also offer an extensive database of surgeons that have the qualifications and experience you are seeking. Check our directory for a provider in your area and find out if a neck lift is the right procedure for you.